Available as a PDF download and as a printed booklet. Click HERE for the printed booklet.
In the year 1827 in the historic city of Edinburgh, Scotland, a young girl finished stitching a sampler. Today, we celebrate the life of Mary Cornwall through the reproduction of her sampler.
Scotland’s family history records are not the easiest ones to research, and without an age to indicate a year of birth, we cannot pinpoint Mary with certainty. However, a possible Mary was born on March 24, 1819. She was baptised in Saint Cuthberts in Edinburgh on April 25th. Her parents were James Cornwall and his wife Elizabeth, née Sime.
One of the distinguishing features of Scottish samplers are the inclusion of family initials. Mary’s parents’ initials matched the first two recorded by Mary on her sampler. Mary had a brother Thomas and a sister Margaret, a TC and an MC are the third and fourth set of initials on her sampler.
There was often more than one alphabet worked on a sampler. We were particularly taken with the second alphabet Mary worked. Whilst it is the same font as the first, it is worked with four-sided stitch. Note the double “V”.
Girls began to learn needlework by stitching a marking sampler (a primer). Marking samplers served a dual purpose – they taught a child basic embroidery technique and the alphabet and numbers. The letters and numbers learned while embroidering a marking sampler were especially useful, since it was important that a wife was able to keep track of her linens. This was accomplished by marking them, usually in a cross stitch, with her initials and a number. In stitching her sampler, Mary demonstrated that she had mastered the art of marking.
Mary also evidenced that she could work other stitches.
Mary worked her sampler primarily in cross stitch over two threads of linen, together with a section under her name which she worked in cross stitch over four threads of linen. This will work up very quickly. She used cross stitch over one thread to record her name. The other stitches used are backstitch, alternating double backstitch, Algerian eyelet, and four-sided stitch.
Mary’s sampler has been painstakingly reproduced by Lisa Brown and the model lovingly stitched by Nicola Parkman. At the very core of Hands Across the Sea Samplers there is a team of needleworkers who are passionate about antique samplers and being able to share those samplers with you.
There are 2 versions of the pdf. You will be able to download any or all of the following versions of the pdf and the graph:
Version 1 ~ A pdf with a three-page colour chart.
Version 2 ~ A pdf with a one-page colour chart which can be printed but is intended to be viewed/used on your tablet, phone, laptop, or computer.